Any potato lover who waited eagerly at the Sunday dinner table can recall the moment of delight when the big bowl of creamy mashed potatoes came into view. Or when steaming foil packets revealed their luscious contents of popping potato skin and soft, white centers, begging for butter, bacon, salt, and chives. Potatoes are such a wonderful comfort food, and this twice-baked potatoes recipe is just one way to elevate this simple vegetable to a flavor-packed delight everyone will love.
Tip: Sick of rotting potatoes? Here is your guide for keeping them fresh.
- 6 large baking potatoes
- 1 c. cheddar cheese shredded
- 1 c. sour cream
- 2 t. salt
- ½ t. ground pepper
- ⅓ cup freshly cooked bacon, cooled and crumbled (about 6 slices)
- 3 green scallions, finely chopped (separate greens and whites)
Preheat the oven to 400 F.
Prep the potatoes
- We need these potatoes to be super clean, so you can either use a Veggie Wash or create your own solution by mixing 2 T. of vinegar with a cup of warm water. Scrub the potatoes under warm water. If you don’t have a vegetable scrubbing brush you can make your own by crunching up some aluminum foil.
- Dry the potatoes with a dish towel or paper towels. Using a fork, poke multiple sets of holes in each potato.
Cook the bacon and potatoes
- You can either cook the bacon in a frying pan or in the oven. We are a fan of baked bacon so that is what we recommend here.
- Place 6 strips of bacon on a baking pan. We recommend either using a silicone baking mat or a pan with a baking rack. (The bacon bakes better if it is elevated.) Place the pan on the top rack of the oven.
- Place 6 large baking potatoes on a baking pan. Place the potatoes in the oven on the bottom rack.
- Set a 15-minute timer and a 45-minute timer. When the 15-minute timer goes off, check your bacon. If the bacon appears crisp pull it from the oven, set aside for it to cool.
- When the 45 minute timer goes off, check the potatoes. The potatoes are done if you can easily push a fork through without any resistance. If they aren’t quite ready bake them for an additional 7 minutes and check them again.
- Leave the oven on.
Prepare the potatoes
- Allow the potatoes to cool slightly, enough so they can be handled without burning your hands.
- Cut potatoes in half lengthwise.
Prepare the stuffing
- Scoop out most of the flesh of the potatoes and put in the large glass bowl. Leave the potato skins on the baking sheet. Consider using a potato masher before mixing with the other ingredients.
- Break up the bacon into small chunks and put in the large glass bowl.
- Add cheddar cheese, sour cream, scallion whites, and salt & pepper to taste.
- Mix the stuffing so that all ingredients are combined.
Stuff the potatoes
- Evenly divide the stuffing mixture then scoop and fill each potato skin with the stuffing. Sprinkle each stuffed potato with scallion greens and paprika. Think of these as the deviled eggs of the potato world.
Bake the potato skins
- Return stuffed potato skins to the 400F oven and bake for 7 – 10 minutes or until the stuffy-stuff is lightly golden.
- Serve very warm. The potato will dry out as it cools.
- Place one or two refrigerated skins on a microwave-safe plate. Sprinkle with a bit of water and cover. (Here’s an IKEA plate cover for $5 on sale. Just added it to my cart.)
- Heat on high for two minutes.
My final tip on the way out: don’t forget to turn off the oven. I have a bad habit of forgetting because I go off to eat in all my excitement!